One of the first questions we often get when people are first looking to install a garage storm shelter is, “How do I get out of a garage storm shelter if something falls on the door?” This is an understandable concern because it’s likely a tree or other debris could block your door in the event of a severe storm.
It is always a good idea to install storm shelter accessories that are sensible life-saving devices and offer common sense solutions to issues you could encounter. One of these accessories, a ram jack, gives garage storm shelter owners security in knowing they will be able to escape their storm shelter in the event debris blocks their exit.
What is a Ram Jack?
A ram jack is a necessary tool for those who own storm shelters. A hydraulic ram jack is a portable lifting device that can help you lift heavy objects, such as a stuck garage storm shelter door that becomes blocked after a severe storm. It is a good idea to add a ram jack to your garage storm shelter when you have it installed so you don’t have to worry about becoming trapped if or when disaster strikes. Your loved ones will be safe in the shelter and, with the help of the ram jack, be able to escape safely when the storm passes.
What makes a ram jack different than other types of jacks? There are a few ways in which a ram jack you might want for a storm shelter is different, such as:
- Made specifically for doors – Some type of jacks are meant to hoist up other things, such as vehicles, for example. The capabilities of a ram jack, such as its portability, make it useful for lifting garage storm shelter doors.
- Stronger than other jacks – Unlike a jack that might lift up your car so you can change a tire, the tonnage a ram jack can move is substantial, providing you the peace of mind you need to escape your garage shelter if debris has trapped you inside.
In addition to the portability of the ram jack, when fully extended, it gives you enough space to get out of the garage shelter safely. You won’t have to worry about trying to prop up your garage storm shelter door if you were to try and wedge it open.
Other common questions we encounter when storm shelter customers ask about ram jacks include:
How hard is it to operate? What if I am elderly or have a disability?
- Ram jacks are very easy to operate and can lift up to 8 tons with relative ease.
Does the jack require any maintenance?
- No maintenance is required but testing the ram jack unit annually is a great idea.
How do I actually use it? Can I use it in the dark with no light (emergency situations)?
- Simply turn the valve clockwise with the supplied bar to begin lifting with it. Then insert the handle and work in an up and down motion to lift debris.
At Shelter Solutions of Arkansas, we provide high-quality storm shelters, including garage floor shelters, when you need them most. Our tornado shelters and safe rooms have been designed to withstand an EF5 tornado and meet or exceed FEMA 320 and ICC 500 standards. Contact us at (501) 859-6932 to learn about our shelters and helpful accessories that make your shelter the best it can be.